XML: Using an Evolving Standard in Electronic Publishing
XML is the proposed electronic publishing and data interchange format of the future. Currently XML is immature with little tool support, particularly for end-user World Wide Web browser display, although this situation is improving. At present many journal publishers typeset their articles, or at least their article metadata, in SGML. This is converted to HTML for end- user display. The SGML article metadata is used for electronic data interchange for supply to external hosting and abstracting agencies.
This paper will discuss the change to the electronic journal publishing production process implied by an adoption of the World Wide Web standard format of XML, the problems associated with using and displaying XML now, and the future benefits of adopting a standard interchange format. Real work experience gained by 'epub@mimas' (http://epub.mimas.ac.uk) working with journal publishers in actual electronic publishing scenarios is used as illustration.
We have developed, and host, an electronic journals application for a publisher which has the article header information held in XML, using enhanced Dublin Core metadata for the element names. Article abstracts are displayed to the end- user dynamically by conversion of the XML to HTML 'on the fly' using the OmniMark programming language.
We have worked with publishers to transform their article metadata into several SGML interchange formats for supply to other agencies such as aggregators. We have developed their SGML DTDs and made them XML-compliant. We will highlight some of the modifications required to move from SGML to XML and the implications such changes would have within the electronic data production process.
A requirement to use a standard interoperable format for electronic publishing will become increasingly important as academic publishing moves towards becoming 'joined-up' with the global linking of content through the World Wide Web implied by initiatives such as CrossRef which utilises Digital Object Identifiers. Increasing requirements for publishers to supply their article metadata to several external agencies necessitate using a standard electronic data interchange format. XML, with its endorsement by the World Wide Web Consortium, appears to provide the future standard format for many such applications.
Electronic Media in a Global Educational Context
Education, if it is to successfully address global demands, interests and concerns, must be expansive enough to access the entire world for its students. While the common notion of classroom is largely confined to the four walls of an educational institution, for the most part as it now stands, schools are challenged to become more globally accountable and relevant for the student of today. Curriculum within a greater global context is essential, and there is a specific role that the electronic media can play in its optimum delivery. Electronic media can not only bring the world to a student via the traditional classroom, but can connect students who are placed internationally to their home school and teacher whereby continuity and supervision can be maintained while curriculum is created and monitored in accordance with local educational standards. These are how international co-operative education programmes function and take learning to new levels.
In this presentation, I reveal the most current models of co-operative education as practiced in high schools in Ontario today and demonstrate how distance education and curriculum, created on electronic media, demonstrates the best of experiential learning that aligns with most recent brain research of how students learn. This includes my own research on Canadian students who have undergone such experiences.
The models of co-operative education are diverse. There are those that train students in employability skill sets to increase their ability to function within corporate society and be globally competitive, to models that place students in developing communities where they are challenged in their primary assumptions of how the world works and alternatively exercise community building skills, enlist compassion, engage in liberating discourse and authentic human actions. The latter model includes issues related to the poor, oppressed and disenfranchised in society that are minimally included in the mainstream of the taught curriculum. These modules together comprise the entire gamut of our understanding of what Global Education can be.
My research reveals how the electronic media is and can grow to become increasingly pivotal in the development of such curriculum with students, employers and community developers, and maintain a consistency of communication and attentiveness to problems as they may arise while providing a network to a larger body of students in their home communities. I present what is happening and suggest where we can continue to go with these models in order to strengthen educational curriculum, bring about greater global consciousness and create a more compassionate and capable citizenry.
The use of Qualified Dublin Core in the semantic description of an on-line journal: the case of Informattica Online
Informattica Online is a project of an online journal being developed at Universidade do Minho, Portugal. It aims to take the maximum advantage of Internet in order to be an adequate tool for scholarly communication. One of the most important characteristics of this journal, is that it isn't, in fact, a journal, in the traditional way of the term: it doesn't have issues, nor periodicity - all information the user accesses is personalized and dynamically built (based on the documents' semantic description and in the user's profile). Another important characteristic is that it tries to be a tool not only for scholarly communication, but also for informal communication among scholars: it comprises both formal and informal communication documents' genres: Scientific Article, Brief News, Web Page, Comment, Editorial and Revisions Discussions.
These documents and their relationships to each other, within the context of Informattica Online, have been the object of a semantic description using RDF (Resource Description Framework) encoded Qualified Dublin Core. The Dublin Core Element Set (DCES), a recommendation from the Dublin Core Metadata Initiative (DCMI), is a group of fifteen elements that is wished to be broad and flexible enough for widespread use. In order to be so flexible, the DCES elements are both syntactically and semantically defined in a very imprecise way. Whilst this is one of the greatest advantages of Dublin Core, allowing its ease of use and its rapid dissemination, it has also led to misunderstandings, chaotic and conflictual usage among people in different teams or projects, especially in what refers to qualification mechanisms. Dublin Core Qualifiers (DCQ) are being under major development in order to fulfil the lack of richer semantic descriptions. The Dublin Core Metadata Initiative (DCMI) has made available last December several Working Drafts on qualifier usage for the DCES. The Resource Description Framework (RDF), by its turn, provides the necessary encoding mechanism for expressing Dublin Core within XML documents.
In this paper we present and describe the genres of documents already defined to be used within Informattica Online for reader consumption, some of their Qualified Dublin Core RDF descriptions and we draw some conclusions on the usage of Dublin Core, in particular of Qualified Dublin Core in the scope of such a journal. We also state the need for other organizations to develop their own vocabulary (preferably using RDF schemas) to be used complementary to Dublin Core.
Exploiting Web based Electronic Publishing in the service of regional development: lessons from experience
Government institutions, businesses and individual members of society -at least in the developed world- are increasingly required to be literate in Information Technology and knowledgeable about Web based electronic publishing. A key issue is what strategies can be employed to ensure that such skill development is achieved within a community and that the opportunities presented to a community by Web based electronic publishing are exploited to advantage? This question is one which our organisation CONNECT at the University of Liverpool, UK, http://www.connect.org.uk/, has been addressing for the last five years. CONNECT is funded by both public and private sector finance to promote the use of information and communication technologies in the Merseyside region of the UK as part of an economic regeneration strategy for the region. Our work thus addresses many aspects of electronic publishing:
* Dissemination of information by public bodies such as Local Government Authorities to the general public. An example of the output of this work is the Knowsley Local Government Web Site at http://www.knowsley.gov.uk/ Not only does this site provide a large amount of information to the public, it also invites the public to become more involved in the process of local government through use of feedback forms, email contact lists, guestbook, chatroom based consultations, on-line diaries of community events to which the public can electronically submit events for inclusion. A Templating system has been established to allow members of community based organisations to easily create on-line newsletters etc for subsequent publication on the site.
* Web marketing by local businesses on our large regional ecommerce site, http://www.merseyworld.com/ Using in-house software, local businesses can create on-line catalogues complete with a comprehensive and secure purchasing system, http://www.merseyworld.com/mall/ Business can monitor customer traffic at their site as well as access comprehensive site editing and maintenance facilities through an accompanying business support service, see http://www.merseyworld.com/support/hfes/
* Development of IT skills in the community. Many members of the general public, particularly those who have been out of formal education for some time, are both untrained in the use of IT and apprehensive about the use of computers. Members of the general public need to learn both how to intelligently gain access to information and how to promote publication of community events or their own skills, as in job advertising, by electronic means. Our strategy here has been to promote access to the technology through partnership with bodies such as Libraries which provide convenient, secure locations for computer resources and companies such as Telewest, HP and IBM which have sponsored the provision of the necessary ISDN lines and hardware. Initially this partnership resulted in the creation of the Internet Express, a form of roving Internet café which toured libraries in the region providing training in and use of IT technology for three week periods at a particular location, http://www.connect.org.uk/iexpress/. This was superseded by the creation of five permanent community based centres for training in Web based and desk-top publishing tools, see http://www.connect.org.uk/ctl/ Useful electronic resources, such as the MerseyWorkplace which provides a unified web-based portal to job, training and childcare opportunities in the region, http://www.merseyworkplace.com/, have been created in parallel with this educational initiative. From our experience of these activities we would argue that any regional development strategy which embraces Electronic Publishing must involve awareness raising, promotion of know-how skills, opportunity for trial and evaluation and community-oriented software development. These components will be discussed in greater detail in the final paper.
Changes in the dissemination process within the scholarly world: the impact of electronic publishing on scholarly communities of academic social scientists
Much has been proposed and developed in terms of electronic publishing, especially in the academic world. A number of initiatives have taken place world wide with the main aim of providing a more effective communication environment. In order to assess the extent to which those initiatives have been accepted and adopted by academic scholars and scientists, a number of research projects have been carried out in different countries and in a variety of disciplines. It has been observed that, in terms of electronic publishing, there are differences between disciplines, particularly between the three main divisions of knowledge, namely sciences, social sciences and humanities. That is, the adoption and use of electronic media by academic researchers for communication purposes differ from one discipline, or knowledge division, to another. Most of these results relate to communities of scientists rather than to other research communities. This paper describes part of the results of a recent research carried out in Brazil and the UK which investigated the perceptions of academic social scientists of the impact of electronic publishing on the dissemination process within their scholarly communities. Results showed that these two communities of researchers have had similar experiences. Accordingly, it was observed that electronic communication in general, and electronic publishing in particular, have had an impact on both the scholarly community and the dissemination process within it, especially in terms of the dynamic of interactions within the community and the pervasiveness of the electronic media in the stages of the process. It was found that the scholarly community has both expanded its boundaries and increased its interactions at international level. Moreover, the traditional model of the dissemination process, entirely based on the print media, does not exist anymore. On the other hand, an entirely electronic based model, as proposed by some authors, has not yet been fully implemented. Therefore, a hybrid dissemination model is proposed as depicting the situation so far. In this sense, the impact of electronic publishing (that is, the formal aspects of the process -its final stage) on the information dissemination amongst academic social scientists has been less strong than the impact of the use of electronic communication for informal contacts (discussion with colleagues -its initial stages), which now prevails.. Nevertheless, it has been foreseen by a number of respondents that there is an irreversible trend towards the prevalence of electronic media at all stages of the process for the near future, especially in terms of electronic journals. Electronic books, are not at present, under consideration by those scholars.
Document architecture and scholarly hypertext editions
Understanding current media development often benefits from an understanding of (previous developments in) media history. One such development is the transmediation of works from one particular media form to another. Each document type within each medium offers a certain architectural setting, a particular document architecture. How are different document architectures to be treated and analysed in the process of digitisation? Ought they be conserved, slightly adapted to new media environments, or perhaps radically changed? The scholarly critical edition (CE), with its complex mass of interrelated, multi-layered and diversified textual material, is certainly one of the more outstanding metatextual tools print culture has brought about. It might therefore prove a valuable study in order to gain further knowledge and insights into the mechanisms involved in the digitisation of works previously represented on printed paper. Ever since its primeval phases, the CE forms and is formed by a particular conception of the way literary works could and even should be (re)presented in codex book form. Obvious factors in this formation are the very physical constraints posed by the codex book, or in other words its material 'economy', which de facto forces scholarly editors to: a) centralize the CE and its edited work around a particular, privileged version of the work ; b) bury the other, heterodox versions in the catacombs of the CE, namely in the labyrinthine variant apparatuses. Thus buried, the noise of dissonant works becomes barely audible.
For the last decades, however, three phenomena have begun to challenge this hegemonic and almost ossified CE form. Firstly, a frustration concerning the way codex books seriously constrain what can and can't be done in critical editorial practice. Secondly, alternative notions as to what way literary works should be presented in CE:s at all, e.g. 'genetic criticism'. Thirdly and foremost, opportunities brought about by digital media and technology. In this paper I should like to address relations between codex books and computer files as tools for storing and distributing CE:s. What are the essential constraints and qualities of the two media forms, and to what different edition types and editorial strategies might and might they not be favourable? Are there areas where the two overlap, complement each other, or compete? Will the role of the scholarly editor change? Is there a line between an electronic 'edition' and an 'archive'?
In principle, editorial strategy spans in its focus from the uniform work (as manifested in a particular base text) to the multiform work (as manifested in the different versions). Codex book economy has served uniformity more functionally than multiformity. How are digital editions to be constructed in this respect? As incunabula, current electronic CE:s tend to disclose in their structure and design the still sovereign status of printed codex editions. Perhaps we had better consider what possible surplus a digital edition might have in comparison to its printed counterpart - and vice versa, and how they might complement each other?
Paperless paperbacks: a pilot evaluation of two portable electronic books at Loughborough University
Publication for portable electronic books has thus far concentrated mainly on consumer books and not on academic and professional texts. However, the portable electronic book presents a range of potential advantages to those involved in Higher Education (be they students, lecturers or publishers) as the medium becomes more popular and mature.
This paper reports on a small pilot project being undertaken at Loughborough University regarding portable electronic books in May 2000. The study considers student and staff reaction to using two devices that are currently available for purchase: Rocket eBook and Glassbook Inc's Glassbook. In this research the authors will attempt to gauge the popularity and potential market of these devices within an academic institution. As the paper will consider, the academic sector offers a real opportunity for uptake of these devices in terms of portability (i.e. ability to hold many texts on a device) and usability (i.e. ability to navigate between texts).
In the study, the authors will measure the popularity (or not) of the devices against a range of criteria. These will include issues regarding ease of use, navigability, readability, potential expense and robustness. Additionally, the research will consider the popularity of these devices between different age groups (i.e. do older people find them appealing to use or vice verca?) and the different sexes (i.e. are there notable differences of opinion on the products?)
The research is of particular interest considering the increasing popularity of portable electronic books. Two Readers, the Rocket ebook and SoftBook have enjoyed steady sales since their release in September 1998. Crucially, development of the Open eBook Publication Structure allowing a common non-proprietary file format for all ebooks has encouraged publishers to make books available for the format. Later on this year, Microsoft releases its Pocket PC, which incorporates a Reader using their ClearType display system.
XML: More than an e-publishing language
XML is an SGML-based language designed for the interchange of documents with more flexible and powerful features than those provided by HTML. It can be considered as an intermediate step between HTML and SGML. On one hand, it is a fully conformant SGML application, but without most of the features of SGML that make it complex to handle or that are rarely used. On the other hand, XML is not restricted to a fixed DTD as HTML is: users can choose from the set of available DTD's the one that is best suited for their applications, or develop new ones for fully satisfying their requirements.
SGML is the most used language in the publishing area. Since XML is based on SGML but adapted and simplified for Internet usage, XML can be considered as good language for e-publishing, mainly together with information layout features provided by complementary stylesheet standards like XSL.
Although XML is initially a meta-language intended for publishing in the Web, there are many other applications of XML. Some of them are being widely used, some others are under investigation and some others still need be to be conceived.
In the paper, we will describe some experiences with XML, that include:
1) Statistics handling: We have used XML to provide logical structure to e-commerce site statistics information. To present this information to the users, XSL stylesheets were used, but also XSLT, that provides the way to easily transform XML documents into other text based format documents. In our case XML statistics information was transformed into HTML.
2) Metadata description: Among the existing models for associating metadata with different types of contents, one is of special interest in the context of the Web: RDF, which provides a framework for specifying statements about resources (e.g. documents accessible via HTTP) and their properties (e.g. authors, keywords, etc.), in an interoperable way with the use of the XML syntax.
3) Forms interchange: We started an implementation of forms submission using HTML forms, whose code was generated automatically using existing information. This approach had several problems: - HTML language permits very basic form construction. - With HTML we cannot define relationship among the form fields. - The file generated to store form values is a simple text file with format Name, Value. The solution was the use of XML to construct and store the forms in an intelligent manner, since it is possible to add semantics to the forms using XML.
4) XML/EDI payment: XML/EDI makes use of XML to represent EDI messages, which are used for the interchange of commercial data between computer systems. The XML/EDI Group, set up in July 1997, published in 1998 the main XML/EDI reference. In early 2000, a CWA (CEN Workshop agreement) has been produced by the XML/EDI workgroup of the CEN/ISSS. We have used XML/EDI to implement a payment mechanism in an e-commerce system.
5) Others: Knowledge representation, IPR information transfer and negotiation, etc
Service Engineering for Publishers: Systematic Development of new Services in the publishing field
Publishers are now awakening to the opportunities not merely for safeguarding and expanding their own competitive position with the aid of innovative services, but also for acquiring entirely new business segments. At the same time, they are confronted with a lack of systematic processes and methods that are essential above all to develop successful services.
The digitalisation of the product and the supply chain has deep influence of the competitive capacity of a publishing company. The content management itself will not suffice for success in the fast changing world of electronic publishing.
There are four main strategies:
In this presentation we will concentrate on service engineering as a possibility of developing new products, services and processes in the publishing field, because a large demand in this field becomes visible. The development of printed products is already the main task in every publishing company, but for the development of product accompanying services or independent services there is still a huge demand. For a successful development it is necessary to describe und standardise a systematic proceeding of service engineering similar to the common product engineering processes in many companies. Furthermore it is necessary to describe a toolset for service engineering. Examples for such additional services are the building of a community, the innovative use of new end user technology and the design new media engineering processes.
The presentation will consist of the following chapters (depending on time
The presentation is based on two applied research projects and different consulting projects in the field of publishing and media production.
International Co-operation in the Media Industry Situation and Guidelines in the Age of Electronic Publishing
Electronic publishing, digitisation and data transmission allow other forms of co-operation between media companies. In addition, different models occur to integrate clients and users in the production process. These trends also offer vast chances to start or extend international activities in the publishing industry.
Besides a few global players, most publisher and media service companies are still oriented towards their regional markets. Nowadays many clients act more internationally, information is globally offered via internet, and new telecommunication providers enlarge possibilities to develop and distribute media services. Altogether, this is a challenge to most media companies which have to define their international orientation.
The transfer of media products into an other country does not only demand translation, but needs to be aware of culture, values and habits. Depending on the subject and media channel, users abroad have a different common history, prefer other topics, and are used to specific forms of distribution. Therefore, for adaptation co-operation with partners in a targeted country is often necessary.
Based on a two-years project on international co-operation in the media industry, this presentation will consist of the following results (depending on the time available):
1. Empirical evidence of international co-operation in German media companies (countries, kind of international activity, form of co-operation, problems and success factors ...)
2. Case studies of medium-sized German publishers which practise international co-operations, especially in Eastern Europe (initiative of internationalisation, distribution of responsibilities, interfaces of data transfer ...)
3. Phases and problems at the beginning of co-operations (evaluation of current situation, selection of partners, negotiations ...)
4. Model of the production process in electronic publishing (media engineering, creation of media elements, integration in media products ...)
5. Analysis and design of organisational interfaces between international co-operating partners in electronic publishing (relevance of specific interfaces, common problems and solutions ...)
6. Conclusions and recommendations towards research, companies and politics
Internet and the Problem of Intellectual Property
The fact of Russia's integration into the world economy demands paying attention to the problem of intellectual property. The Internet is an open system for general use, so a lot of on-line materials are used with a breach of copyright. Lawyers need to find legal mechanism that can ensure legal regulation of information relations.
Russia participates in several treaties such as The Bern Convention on Protection of the Literary and Art Production, The World Convention on the Copyright Protection, The Stockholm Convention on the Establishment of the World Intellectual Property Organization. That fact obliges Russia to bring the national legislation into accord with acting international treaties.
The legislation on protection of intellectual property has recently appeared in Russia. The Civil Code of Russia places "the information, the results of the intellectual activity, including exclusive right to them (intellectual property)" among the civil right objects. The Patent Act regulates the relations in the invention sphere. It considers the mechanism of protection of some elements of new information technologies as an object of industrial property. The Law "On the Legal Protection of the Computer Programs and the Databases" relate the computer programs and the databases to the copyright object. The Law "On Information, Informatisation, and Information Protection" considers the questions of possession, use, and disposal of information resources. The law extends the rules of property law to the information resources and the databases, i.e. the property law (in the sense of "thing in possession") and the intellectual property law is not differentiated. The Law "On the Participation in the International Information Exchange" doesn't regulate the copying of the on-line information accessible in the electronic form.
The Third Part of the Civil Code of Russia is just being elaborated. It contents rules regulating the use of results of intellectual activity. The European Union has elaborated 5 directives aimed at improving the participating country's legislation in the field of copyright law. World Trade Organization made an international agreement on the trade right of intellectual property (TRIPs). The agreement provided international standards as applied to civil measures of protection of copyright as well as to measures of criminal law and administrative law. Unfortunately, a lot of provisions of the Civil Code draft don't meet these standards.
Consequently, the legislation needs reforming. The new legal rules should reflect the problems of the development of the Internet in Russia. Complexity and diversity of relations in the sphere of commercial and industrial use of results of intellectual activity has been increasing for a long time. It is necessary to elaborate more diverse and complicated mechanism of legal regulation, perhaps, even a new branch of law. Formation of the information society in Russia much depends on improving the its legislation.
Electronic Publishing / Agency Products
Starting with a 10-year history of Serial Agency Services in Russia, the author demonstrates the need for a Global concept of Serial knowledge products. The current invasion of Electronic delivery of information through intermediary Agency is revealed as an important commercial venture as an Aggregator supplementing and improving their traditional services.
The Program and Agenda of participating information professionals is clear evidence that a Global theme of Electronic Services is sweeping our industry. This Fourth Conference marks particularly the determination to involve Russian Institutions in this information revolution. It is therefore important that one should examine in detail the players, quantity and quality of information services available that make this revolution a realty for the end-users as well as bringing library services in Russia into the cutting edge of the Electronic delivery of knowledge. As in most industries, information competition demands a Global operation and database to be truly a reliable service factor. To that end Swets & Zeitlinger with Blackwell Subscription Services merged 2 powerful systems to create the strongest knowledge provider in the world; with 20 offices, strategically located for use in over 50 countries - a turnover of over 1 billion dollars, as the information provider of choice of 75% of this Global industry. Both agencies are century old, dependable partners, always investing time, talent and capital to stay on the cutting edge of available technology. As opportunities were presented both entered uninitiated markets to permanently participate in those regions where joining the knowledge community for the long term, exhibited a commitment that was a mission rather than an immediate return on investment. We opened an office on the Soviet scene in 1990 and after a thorough market study of both products and services elected to register our enterprise as a Russian legal entity in 1992, subject to the obligations and rights under Russian law, addressing forthrightly the matter of reliability and ability to perform all services in strict compliance with government laws and regulations. This action brought to Russia over 40,000 publishers with over 200,000 serials to offer the same foreign literature available in the Western library world. Specifically, Swets/Blackwell has a second to none concentration of information products and services in Science, Technology and Medicine with a database uniquely structured to deliver needed information to libraries and end-users. There are at this moment over 6,000 full text electronic titles available with 90% of the top STM publishers offering e-journal versions. The growth of electronic information is in its infancy where demand will dictate even a faster proliferation of E Versions. Publishers obviously want to expeditiously get their products to the end-user, who in turn need the widest range of publications across all published knowledge in the narrowest of subject fields that reveal a selected cross section of information penetrating their field of interest and which no one publisher can provide. Nevertheless, the product delivery structure grounded on the historical printed journal continues to dictate the financial concerns of the publishers entering the E Journal field. It is not that you “Can’t have one without the other”, it is rather a serious concern of survival, with a large array of how to approach the matter. A serious pricing study involving a cross sector of publishers was conducted by Albert Prior of Swets & Zeitlinger, published in Serials, Vol. 12, No. 2, 1999 also available on Swets website http://www.swet.nl/electron.html “concentrating on web-based full text journals that parallel existing peer reviewed scholarly print journals”. Complicating that issue, particularly in libraries, is the matter of long term archiving, an essential and historical purpose in a libraries’ collection. These and other concerns require separate attention not treated here. The role of an agency subscription service, entering E Journal delivery, is principally grounded upon the added value their services can contribute to the library client’s acquisition investment. This implies an extension of the limited functionality of the common E Journal Portable Document Format (PDF) into a web-based service reaching far beyond single article delivery. Uncomplicated access to the largest quantity of journals in specific fields of interest, which represent up to the minute data with interfaces that bring together bibliographic databases and the full text journal is within the scope of the modern Subscription Agency mission and expertise. Subscription Agency services while maintaining the print/E Journal version services offered through traditional publishers note the emergence of other information publishing options such as Stanford University Highwire Press e-print and archive servers, reprint or e-print research archives by Pub Med Central, an N.I.H. US government project, Cross Ref, a citation connecting to the full text article, as well as non refereed ad hoc research on line. The subject of licensing for use of the E Journal Product either maintained on the Subscription Agency server or obtained through a Gateway arrangement with each publisher is equally complex as publishers attempt to protect their investment preventing what they consider illegal use of their products. Some progress has been made in the development of Generic Standard licenses that express an agreement between publisher, agencies and users on their negotiated wills. These negotiations are a normal extension of Agency/Publisher contacts, an added burden relief for the library.
Electronic Publishing of Dissertations - Benefits, Popularity and Technical Realisation
The paper is concerned with the electronic publishing process of dissertations in the Department of Veterinary Medicine at the Freie Universitat Berlin.
First of all it discusses the benefits of electronic publishing for users, authors and the university. For example: Users get a worldwide and 24h/day access via different search tools to the dissertations; Students do not only have financial benefits but - much more important - become information literate and are prepared for a professional career; Universities offer an instant worldwide access to their intellectual products, serve more clients with fewer staff and have considerable cost savings.
The second part deals with the technical realisation of the publishing process. Reasons are given for the used file formats (PDF/HTML) and the techniques used to make it possible to retrieve the documents (Metadata/Harvest/Database Web Interface etc.). The automated workflow of the publishing process is described and a short overview over the used programming language PHP is given.
In the third part an evaluation of requests for electronic dissertations will show a much higher demand for electronic dissertations than for the conventional format. Average access of more than 60 downloads per dissertation per year in comparison to the usage of paper copies (0-7 requests per dissertations per year) demonstrates the popularity of electronic dissertations. An increase of more than 500% of downloads since the start of the electronic publishing of dissertations in 1998 suggests big chances for further developments.
Electronic publishing of doctoral dissertations, copyright issues and how to deal with the problems
This paper will focus on the issues of copyright with regard to electronic publishing, an area not yet fully covered. The copyright issues are one of problems that need to be solved in a project at Lund University Library, "Electronic publishing and archiving of doctoral dissertations in full text".
Today many doctoral students, when having finished their PhD thesis, already have an existing electronic version of their work. Besides the fact that the theses are difficult to locate on different websites at the university, the electronic publishing also needs to be organized in a systematic way using the Lund University Dissertation abstracts database, also in particular with regard to the copyright issues. This is crucial with dissertations which includes already publishes articles in prominent journals.
In order to solve the copyright issues of the doctoral dissertations that includes list of articles, the commercial publishers were approached by asking for permission for electronic publishing of included articles, most of then already published in various prominent journals. Uncertainty is expressed, from the publisher's perspective, who sees electronic publishing as a threat and a lack of control of the material and from the author´s perspective who hesitates putting future academic publishing at risk. Deriving from the answers and restrictions from both parts, the negotiable issue for the copyright is the amount of time passed between first publishing of the article and the electronis publishing of the doctoral dissertation. The time factor is avaluable in the negotiation between the author and the publisher since this aspect seems to reduce the uncertainties of electronic publishing for the publisher as well as for the author.
COMBINED CD-INTERNET APPROACH TO THE CREATION OF ELECTRONIC MANUALS IN HISTORY
A combined approach to the creation of multimedia teaching programs allows to combine opportunities of prompt edition modification using Internet resources with high volumes and saturation with audio and video materials characteristic for CD-editions.
Electronic manual "History of Russia: the 20th century" consists of 4 CDs and a brochure. It includes 278 multimedia lectures (over 24 academic hours of announcer's text, over 6000 illustrations, over two hours of news films with sound track). Studies of each of 54 paragraphs end with testing and marking (over 1200 tests, crosswords, etc.) The course is supplemented with a comprehensive reference material: over 700 personalia; detailed chronology, dictionary of terminology, over 30 animated maps, over 700 documents, over 70 sound documents. There is a full-text retrieval system. The course has been approved by the Federal Expert Council, Committee for Science and Education under State Duma of the Russian Federation, Moscow Bureau of UNESCO. This is the first and so far the only electronic edition included in the federal list of RF manuals. The course is widely and successfully used in the educational process. In 1998 and 1999 the course was twice declared "the best teaching program in humanities" (according to polls among over 1500 specialists at the International Conference Exhibition "Information Technologies in Education").
One of the reasons making multimedia teaching programs less attractive is that editors have to postpone issue of new updated versions until the previous CD edition is sold out. Under restricted solvent demand this process takes years. On the other hand, Internet, due to its low throughput capacity, cannot become a real instrument of delivery of voluminous multimedia teaching programs to a great number of users so far. In such conditions the only solution is to create hybrid CD-Internet products, in which the initial version of the publication is supplied on CDs, while the teaching program is continuously updated by way of regular deliveries of relatively small updating volumes via Internet (or other channels, up to diskettes).
Unfortunately, as far as we know, none of the universal software shells designated for quick development of multimedia electronic editions provides for such updating.
We have developed our own software shell. Edition updating technology implemented therein is very simple: a program recorded to a CD finds a fresher version of itself on the hard disk and transfers control to this new version. A similar procedure is used in choosing scripts controlling the process of teaching, illustrations and so on. First, the hard disk is checked, if a new version of a particular file is found, it is this version that will be used. The course updating procedure implies Internet loading and one-time start-up of self-extracting archives with new files. As a result of this the old version of the electronic edition transforms into a new improved one in a manner, which is absolutely "transparent" to the user. These improvements may be quite radical and their nature is not predetermined in any way.
The course is updated monthly free of charge and displayed at the www.history.ru site: the course is supplemented with new materials (documents, personalia, illustrations), chronological table is constantly expanded, etc.); the program is improved methodically, its interactivity is stepped up, as well as efficiency of the knowledge assessment system.
For example, the number of questions in the final test has been increased notably (two- or three-fold). Thus, the updated version of the program offers a different set of questions to the student at each try, raising authenticity of the knowledge standard assessment.
In-class tasks added to the course allow to control the students knowledge more efficiently, orient them to serious work, concentrate their attention on key problems, facts that may be poorly comprehended in case of passive listening to the educational material. At the same time in-class tasks make the program operation process more dynamic and game-like.
Information Technology "Key To Text" for Semantic search and indexing of textual information - an essential tool for Electronic Publishing
The explosive growth of the information resources available electronically created a necessity for efficient semantic search engines. The traditional methods including keyword search and context search are effectively unable to provide a semantic filtering in sufficiently large data arrays - the resulting search output is still beyond the scope of human analysis. Similar problems are present in an alternative approach - a priori semantic indexing - as it requires compilation and standardizing thesauruses which poses additional difficulties. Inefficient filtering also puts excessive pressure on the network by tightening the traffic. The efficient analysis and search of the textual information requires a profound and sophisticated language and text models and essentially new methods. Such models and algorithms were developed by our research team at the center of New Information Technologies of the Moscow Medical Academy under the grants of the Ministry of Science (N 2.19.2 NCTN-SE, 2D-220/II-94) and Russian Fund for Basic Research (RFBR N 00-07-90116, N 97-07-131, N 98-01-00929).
Our search technology is based on a new original two-level model of understanding and interpretation of a text. While the second level requires human interaction and understanding of a language semantics, the first level is the one where purely computational approach offers its help. It turns out that based on combinatorial-statistical analysis, it is possible to synthesise the semantic pattern of a given text, i.e., to generate a generally small subset of the words mostly closely bearing the text's semantics, without referencing to the semantics of the language the text is written in. In particular, the language thesauruses are not used. This phenomenon appears to be true for many European languages (including, for example, Russian and English). The engine based on the two languages was implemented on a local network of workstations. These procedures have been developed by our team and comprise the core of the intellectual technology we offer. In other words, the technology delivers a sufficiently detailed semantic (semiotic) portrait of a text and can be used for semantic search, classification, and annotation, and development of information resources. While featuring completeness and accuracy of the semantic search and classification, it does not require any form of a priori knowledge of the language besides the language morphology. This facilitates application to virtually any subject area and an extension to more than one language.
The set of tools we developed includes:
The technology is oriented to both end-users and information resource providers and developers.
Improving Individual Book Publishing Concepts with XML Schema
The talk will present a new approach in publishing individual books. Individual books are paper-based bound books compiled by users themselves that only a very small number of copies are produced of. The selectable content is provided via a publisher or more common via a content provider website. Current Book-On-Demand (BoD) projects and applications concerning this topic allow the user only to compile fixed book units to a new book. So, for example, different stories of a data bank can be put together to one book or individual recipes can be collected in one book, etc. However, the layout and the fundamental structure of the arising book are not flexible. Within these systems individuality means either an omission or rearrangement of complete partial documents.
The represented concept gives users an extended flexibility for compiling individual books. Independently, the user can put together a new document consisting of structural units. This means to exchange, for example, images, tables, or paragraphs, among several original chapters. In addition, it is possible to integrate units from third-party systems or own partial documents. Also the integration of dynamic contents, for example, the filling up of tables with current data, is possible.
These new variants of BoD production demand an accordingly flexible document data model that facilitates a content structuring on the one hand and offers a precise definition of the formats of individual structure units on the other hand. Therefore, the represented approach is based on the W3C Recommendation XML Schema that is still in the development stage, as well as on the further XML related concept Namespaces. Considering existing book-oriented Document Type Definitions (DTDs) like ISO12083 and TEI, XML Schema modules for the new extended individual books concept is being developed. The existing and tested DTDs offer a good basis to reproduce typical book structures like chapters, sections, and paragraphs. However, there are well-known shortcomings of DTDs. One problem with DTDs is that they do not really provide support for 'typing' of data. To a DTD an XML element is a string of characters. Exact types, as provided by the XML Schema, can be used to make a flexible, individual document structure possible. Within this structure an automatic semantic processing as well as automatic business processing are feasible.
The presented work is embedded in a research project for the development of innovative BoD publishing concepts. The first prototypical application within this project is an XML driven website for the individual compilation of study-guide information. The paper ends with a short explanation of this application.
Electronic Publishing and the Evolving Intellectual Property Regime
The explosion of e-commerce and the transition to electronic publishing pose challenges to international intellectual property regimes. Copyright and patent law worldwide are in disarray; it is possible that much of traditional copyright law may be marginalized. The awarding of "junk" patents for simple online business methods may pose serious threats to innovation in e-commerce.
Internet users expect free or very low cost information provision for anything except for specialized information. Owners of intellectual property expect remuneration. Until the digital age, a balance had evolved between these two groups. But the open ethos of the Internet is at odds with a system that relies on well-defined property rights, including the right to buy and sell intellectual property.
Intellectual property owners assert their rights online in three ways. One is tightening existing laws. It may be a losing battle to halt the ingenuity of hackers and the pace of technological innovation. Enforcing copyright laws across national boundaries is almost impossible. The World Intellectual Property Organization's new "Digital Agenda" is gaining currency but the prospect of universal international harmonization is distant.
Another way is through contracts a user must agree to when signing up for a program or electronic publication. The legal standing of these "click-on" or "shrink-wrap" agreements" is murky. A proposed amendment to the Uniform Commercial Code, which governs interstate commerce in the United States, to establish the legal standing of such agreements, is being vigorously opposed by the American Library Association.
A third way, the use of code, is perhaps the most attractive one for owners of electronic intellectual property. Code provides techniques to control the uses of information through encryption technology. The United States' Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998, which makes it a felony for someone merely to attempt circumvention of protective code, has been described as "unilateral technology disarmament." Competing schemes for automated copyright permissions and reprints allow intellectual property owners to know who is using digital information and to control its distribution, but it is not clear which system of technical means of protection will prevail. Existing e-book systems rely on proprietary technologies to restrict their users to viewing only those e-books designed to run on their devices. The recently signed Electronic Book Exchange (EBX), a standard that creates a universal software format for all e-books, will make it possible for consumers to download e-books for viewing on a variety of devices.
Companies such as netLibrary, iBooks, and Ebrary.com, distributing to PCs, demonstrate alternate methods of protecting intellectual property.
We can learn something from the recent release of Stephen King's latest short story, "Riding the Bullet," exclusively in electronic form. Through code, it was made available only on computers and hand-held instruments like the Palm Pilot.
More to the point, it could not be copied. This limitation is at odds with the "First Sale Doctrine," a rule embedded in copyright law that allows people to lend or resell a hard copy after they have purchased it. This has profound implications for libraries.
Electronic publishing for the preservation and dissemination of rare manuscript material
The paper discusses the use of electronic publishing for the preservation and dissemination of rare manuscript material. It is based both upon the authors' earlier work on multimedia integration and upon their experience of designing and developing "Treasures of Islam: Art and Design in Islamic Manuscripts". This trilingual multimedia CD-ROM (with interfaces in English, French and Arabic) contains rare or unique art work, together with a number of complete texts, selected from a collection of Islamic manuscripts held in the Department of Rare Books at McGill University. It combines text, still images, video sequences, music and voices. The paper deals with the following issues: Content selection: selection criteria (rarity, aesthetic value, financial value, etc.), authentication, copyright issues. Authoring system: selection of authorware. Interface design: determination of an overall design metaphor, layout, color, fonts, image presentation Retrieval devices: search versus browse options. Multimedia integration: options for integrating various media into one unified product. Multilingualism: problems involved in opting for a multilingual environment. Production and marketing: cover design, ancillary documentation, market identification, copyright. The paper discusses CD-ROM versus the Web as a publication medium for this type of material, and concludes with design criteria that can be applied to the development of multimedia products for the market place.
From Open Source to Open Information: Collaborative methods in creating XML-based markup languages
Until the beginning of the last decade, the Internet was primarily used by scientific, educational, and military organisations for the exchange of information such as data files and electronic mail. The advent of the easy-to-use hypertext system World Wide Web has, however, begun a new era of the world-spanning computer network.
In our paper we examine a part of the Information Marketplace (Dertouzos,1997) that will give users of the World Wide Web a wide range of new possibilities for gathering information, a task that is predominantly carried out using search engines.
One major property of search engines is the lack of semantic certainty that results from both the absence of structure of the indexed documents as well as insufficient methods of information extraction and information retrieval.
When using a search engine, a user is almost always confronted with hundreds or thousands of documents but real relevance regarding the keywords entered is not necessarily given.
The aforementioned lack of structure in Web documents will be overcome in the next few years by an augmented use of XML and a simultaneous turning away from HTML that only allows a rather coarse annotation of textual elements such as headlines, tables, or paragraphs.
However, the new structural variety and liberty of XML bears the dangers of the continuous re- invention of the wheel: As XML allows for a free definition of concrete markup languages like HTML, a lot of proprietary XML-based annotation schemata will emerge that will make the process of automatic information extraction by search engines difficult. A large part of the success of the Internet and especially the World Wide Web is based on the standardization of markup languages.
In our paper we will outline a development that will counteract this XML babel. The main reason for this development is a paradigm in software development which has been successful for almost 20 years now. This paradigm, called Open Source (diBona et al., 1999, Raymond, 1999), made possible, among other things, the free operating system Linux; it will give also the deployment of quasi standardized XML-based markup languages new anddecisive impulses.
These impulses will result in what we want to call Open Information. Our paper will at first give a brief introduction by highlighting the current state of the art in annotating information for their use on the World Wide Web.
Besides XML we will look at new standards that have emerged lately for making metainformation more explicit and for the building up of conceptual hierarchies.
Subsequently, we will take a look at the roots, the motivation and the current understanding of the phenomenon of Open Source.
The main part of the talk will combine the paradigm of Open Source software development with the collaborative creation and maintenance of XML-based markup languages and annotation schemata for Electronic Publishing.
Dertouzos, Michael (1997): What will be. New York: HarperEdge.
DiBona, Chris; Ockman, Sam and Stone, Mark (eds.) (1999): Open Sources: Voices from the Open Source Revolution. Cambridge etc.: O'Reilly.
Raymond, Eric S. (1999): The Cathedral and the Bazaar: Musings on Linux and Open Source by an Accidental Revolutionary. Cambridge etc.: O'Reilly.
Developments Towards a New Digital Publishing Model
The Houston Academy of Medicine - Texas Medical Center Library, a private library funded by a consortium of twenty medical institutions, is building a web-based digital library of medical history concentrating on the State of Texas and the Texas Medical Center located in Houston. Our goals are to increase the awareness and utilization of the large, rare, and culturally rich holdings of the Library and its partners.
These goals are being approached in part by developing and implementing a novel academic publishing model in which the intellectual content of the original object is enhanced. By creating parallel versions in digital and print formats, the intellectual content of manuscripts or other materials can be made more widely accessible. The enhancement occurs by including additional materials such as images, sound files, or supplementary text files that would have been precluded in traditional print media. Through the use of server-based software, end-users have the choice of printing a facsimile of the print version for free, viewing the enhanced version on line for free, or downloading/printing the enhanced version for personal use for a fee.
Due to the nature of many materials (tight bindings on books, three- dimensional artifacts, oversize artwork), the use of high-resolution digital cameras is being tested to provide archival digital files. Metadata generated in this process will facilitate searching in on-line catalogs and on the web. Given the expense of establishing such facilities, an emphasis has been made on developing additional projects of a collaborative nature with other local cultural heritage institutions and libraries.
Developments Towards a New Digital Publishing Model
Like academic libraries all over the UK, the library at the University of the West of England (UWE), Bristol, has witnessed a rapid increase in the number of online journals. These electronic publications could potentially transform the scholarly communication process, economically, organisationally and physically, through new models of journal content and form. This paper reports on research carried out to examine whether the impact of e-journals on scholarly research and publication currently matches this potential. It also discusses how the role of the academic library may be affected.
The question was addressed by means of two surveys:
The findings suggest that, while there is a high level of interest in e-journals within the academic community, actual use of them is low. The highest level of use tends to be among those engaged in research, whether they are students or staff. Also, use is higher among the Business and Science Faculties and lowest in the Arts Faculties. The principal reason for limited uptake proved to be attributable not so much to the electronic format but simply to lack of awareness of what is available. Overall there was a positive attitude towards e-journals and a feeling that they are the way forward for the future. However the majority of e-journal users interviewed tended to be familiar with them only as parallel versions of print journals. Indeed it became clear that a major factor in the acceptance of electronic journals was the parallel existence of well-known, respected, peer-reviewed, paper counterparts. There was little awareness of the innovative possibilities of e-journals.
The paper concludes that, within the UK academic environment, the main impact of e-journals resides in the convenience of being able to access them from the office, laboratory or home PC. For the majority of users the full innovative potential of e-journals has yet to be realised. It argues that these electronic resources are still in a transitional stage, and that in order for the cultural change to take place that would enable a shift, away from parallel print and electronic, to electronic-only publications, there needs to be a critical mass of regular e-journal users. Once this has occurred it will then be possible for the more esoteric innovative e-journals to begin to make an impact.
The implications for the role of the academic library are seen to focus initially on the training and promotion of electronic resources. However, ultimately, as the use of distributed electronic publications increases, the role could develop into that of an IT learning centre providing an IT infrastructure of sufficient quality and capacity to access its electronic resources, and offering a high level of user support.
The Development of an On-line Submission and Peer Review System
Online submission and peer review is emerging as the next step forward for many journal publishers in an ever increasing drive to take advantage of technological improvements in transferring data electronically over the internet. The Electronic Submission and PEer Review (ESPERE) project is composed of a consortium of learned society and commercial journal publishers intent on utilising the changes in technology to improve the services they provide to their authors, cut their costs and increase their efficiencies.
This paper describes how the project determined the requirements of authors, referees and publishers. It then describes how these findings were used to develop a new electronic submission and peer review system.
The requirements were established by setting up a trial submission system and also investigating the type of file formats that would be required for a fully cross platform submission system. The online trials utilised a modified version of Basic Support for Co-operative Work (BSCW) a piece of collaborative software developed by GMD Fit. Although BSCW was not specifically designed for the projects purposes it provided a stable platform for implementing trials into online submission and peer review. The investigation into file formats resulted in the use of the cross platform compatible Adobe Acrobat Portable Document Format (PDF) files allowing a file to be prepared with text, graphics and tables in a compressed form for transmission over the internet.
The resulting feedback from publishers, authors and referees provided a unique insight into the benefits and drawbacks of using electronic systems over the internet. More importantly it provided the critical information required to develop a new system. The new system was developed to model some of the publishers existing procedures to minimise the in-house workflow disruption, just as importantly it implemented the reactions from authors and referees to adopting electronic methods of submitting and reviewing papers.
The resultant system is configurable reliable and intuitive. It allows authors to register with and upload papers to a secure server, it includes facilities for authors to send any format of additional files and it provides feedback on the status of the authors submission. Referees are able to view papers and supporting files easily and quickly by following an encoded URL, they also have the possibility of online reporting. Publishers can easily monitor and administrate the submitted files via an administration interface. Many of the routine tasks of paper administration have been fully automated.
As the investment requirement for technology decreases the feasibility for publishers large and small to adopt internet systems increases. The paper proposes how the publishers existing electronic systems could one day be totally integrated into an all encompassing internet solution from the submission of a paper through to final publication.
The Kulturarw3 Project - The Swedish Royal Web Archiw3e
Since 1661 the Royal Library (Kungl. biblioteket, abbreviated KB), is assigned the task of collecting all Swedish printed publications. Recently KB has inaugurated a project, entitled Kulturarwł (The Swedish Archiwłe), with a view to the long-term preservation of electronic documents. The aim of this project is to test methods of collecting, preserving and providing access to Swedish electronic documents, which are accessible on line in such a way that they can be regarded as published. Since the start of the project we have made seven complete downloads of the swedish web. Currently our collection comprises about 65 million items. About half of them are text documents, mostly html and plain text. Through this project KB is also laying the foundations of a collection of Swedish electronic publishing for our time and for coming generations.
The following topics will be discussed
XML took us to interactive 3D
The information volumes increase dramatically and will continue to do so in times to come. The objects/functions being described have become more complex. It is getting more difficult to understand and to find the information needed. This is the scenario for the user.
A key factor in this situation is therefore to find new ways to search, present and to make information easy to access and assimilate. The 3D-technique that just recently was available to only those with big money and state of the art computers, is now available to those with standard equipment.
At the R&D dept at AerotechTelub Information and Media, we have carried out a study on new ways to search and present information to different user categories. The project originated in developing the next generation of spare parts catalogues for the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration (DMA). The solution presented was based on a new user interface comprising a mixture of presenting structure, interactive 3D and text information on the same screen. On the way we realised that this way of presenting information gave a clear and easy to understand view of the objects described and opened up for a phase 2 of the study. In this second phase the user interface was further developed to allow fast access to all document types (repair manuals, functional descriptions, spare parts catalogue etc) using the structure and interactive 3D for "vertical navigation" and filters for the different document types for "horizontal navigation".
The information is linked which allows navigation in either window. Filters are used to select type of information to be presented...... This fascinating chapter will be revealed at the presentation and expanded in the proceedings! A topic when new technical advancements are considered and introduced is to make them fit into an existing environment. Usually, it is better to evolve than revolve. So the question has been, how to achieve the benefits of the efficient 3D-based presentation, without having to throw overboard the existing solutions, already proven functional and effective.
Today the DMA has implemented a versatile system to handle the digital materiel related information that is acquired and produced on the behalf of the Swedish Defence. This platform will be the key means to ensure that maintenance instructions, descriptions, etc are consistent, correct and up to date, and to ensure that the process of information development is as smooth as ever possible. The platform is aimed to house a variety of data formats, including Word, PDF and HTML documents, among others. However, for a couple of years documentation acquisition projects have prescribed SGML as the format by which documents should be coded and delivered. Various DTDs have been used.
Another key component among DMA's information management tools is the system where parts information is administered. Its database is constantly fed with additional information describing the parts and their interrelation. The present strategy of the DMA is to adapt to the AECMA S1000D concept. There are a couple of materiel systems for which the information is based on AECMA principles, and many more are to come. However, over the years several concepts, more or less similar to S1000D, have been in use, and will continuously be used at least for legacy purposes. So, that is the reality where the newly tested 3D-presentation has to fit in. And this is where XML has proven so helpful! We ended up with an information matrix containing XML-coded information modules and 3D illustrations. Our presentation and demo will describe how we simply added the information, specific for the 3D-presentation, to the existing "SGML-legacy" of maintenance and operations information, with the 3D structural information developed from existing parts information and CAD drawings. By reuse of the AECMA-oriented structures inherent in the available SGML information, with the trivial transition from SGML to XML and with a 3D tool based on standard XML-components we found the path. This simply has taken us from a present good world in 2D to an even better today in true 3D.
A XML browser based on a new user interface comprising a mixture of presenting structure, interactive 3D and text information on the same screen came out as the result of a study carried out for the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration (DMA). Our presentation and demo will describe how we simply added the information, specific for the 3D-presentation, to the existing "SGML-legacy" of maintenance and operations information, with the 3D structural information developed from existing parts information and CAD drawings. By reuse of the AECMA-oriented structures inherent in the available SGML information, with the trivial transition from SGML to XML and with a 3D tool based on standard XML-components we found the path. This simply has taken us from a present good world in 2D to an even better today in true 3D.
A Model for Uniform Distributed Search for Heterogeneous Electronic Resources
The work presented in this paper is based on the combination of three well-known paradigms of Information and Computer Science applied to Electronic Publishing: the availability of documents in electronic form, their storage in databases and distribution of such documents via computer networks. Its objective is to define and demonstrate an experimental implementation of a model based on existing and popular open standards which provides uniform access to various electronic resources.
Concerning documents in electronic form, this model deals with two types of ones - full-text and descriptive, raw data and metadata. In fact, content-based search is not bad for information discovery, but metadata search seems better in sense of precision and completeness. So we have to operate both with primary and secondary documents.
As regards formats proposed by this model, it is a good and mature practice to use SGML (or its derivatives) encoding for pre-release preparation and processing of full-text documents by authors and publishers. Combined with DSSSL this technology provides easy and powerful way to generate alternative representations of the same document, from HTML and RTF to PostScript and PDF, to satisfy various user needs. Also it is a good and mature practice to use MARC family standards and ISO 2709 encoding in process of bibliographic descriptions (i.e. metadata) creation.
Considering the ways documents stored, it seems reasonable to distinguish two groups of technologies - proprietary full-text indexing engines and RDBMS. The former presents itself to be more suitable for handling primary documents. The later correspondingly fits well for metadata. Such a division reflects a traditional view on the problem, but emerging products and standards tend to diminish differences between two approaches. Already we have full-text indexing support from major RDBMS and third-party vendors. Also it is become more popular to use XML encoding for MARC structured bibliographic records.
As regards distribution of electronic documents via computer networks our model utilizes client-server architecture which made a good showing over the past years. More specifically, it proposed to enable two standards which define corresponding protocols to provide remote access for databases. The first one is HTTP which is in wide use since WWW appearance. Its main advantage is simplicity which results in many inexpensive implementations both for client and server side. The second one is Z39.50 which is capable to provide uniform way to perform information search and retrieval for various document types. This protocol defines standard application services not only for complex search and retrieval but for many other useful operations such as document update, order, export, periodic query, etc. HTTP acts only as a transport for proprietary *ML (but not only) documents.
So our model consists of the following elements: indexing engine for full-text documents, RDBMS for highly structured metadata with MARC records at the output, Z39.50 server capable to perform simple and complex search for both document types and capable to produce different formatting, HTTP- server and WWW/Z39.50 gateway providing remote access to this rich facilities by means of ordinary Web browsers.
The "cyber-newspaper" and the European Community Law - The law of information in the Internet Era (An exemple of technical, sociological and legal analysis of e-publishing)
The "cyber-newspaper" and the European Community Law - The law of information in the Internet Era (An exemple of technical, sociological and legal analysis of e-publishing)
Remark: this is the title of a book I am writing and that will be published by the italian publisher, "Giuffre Editore, at the end of this year, and also by the European Commission in French or English
This study tries to outline a proper legal regime for the press in the Internet, focusing in particular on the harmonisation in the EC internal market considered as an interesting "bridge" between International and National Laws. The subject is developed as it follows: - what is a "newspaper" in a conceptual and non-technological point of view, and why the definition applies to technologically different forms of newspapers (press-news, radio-news, TV-news), including those ones published on the Net - the two dimensions influencing the regulation of the "newspaper", in general, in National Law systems: the fundamental right of information and his relationship with the technological constraint of traditional territorial- based media - the Internet as a non-territorial-based medium and the rise of a new public international law supposed to replace national legal systems for better conciliating the global technological dimension of the "newspaper" in the Internet with the fundamental right of information - how EC Law and, subsidiary, National Law, regulate technological aspects of the "newspaper" in the Internet with regards to on-line services liberalisation, property rights, illegal contents and journalist profession, and to which extent they allow to guarantee the right of information pursuing to the superior global legal order
The possibilities for using SMIL in an educational extranet
Electronic publishing, and in particular Web-based publishing, has assumed an increasing importance in higher education. The possibility of delivering learning material to students over an extranet, thus bypassing the need for investment in usual university infrastructure, is clearly an attractive option for many institutions. Teaching staff, even those who are not particularly technically competent, often possess sufficient skills to publish text-based learning material on an extranet. However, this approach to the electronic delivery of courses in essence treats the Web as little more than a "fax-broadcast" medium. Furthermore, recent research suggests that students do not learn effectively from text-only Web-based courses.
The development of plug-in technologies such as Shockwave has enhanced the capabilities of browsers, so it is now possible to deliver highly interactive media-rich learning material over an extranet. This approach has recently been applied successfully in several higher education institutions. However, the authoring of such material requires advanced scripting skills. Furthermore, many of the more successful multimedia-supporting technologies, like Shockwave and Neuron, are proprietary formats.
The promise of Synchronised Multimedia Integration Language (SMIL), a W3C standard, is that it will have the same effect upon the publishing of synchronised multimedia as HTML had upon the publishing of text and static multimedia. In this paper we describe a pilot project to deliver multimedia learning materials over an extranet, and compare this approach with the delivery of similar materials using proprietary plug-in technologies.